The Association for the Study of Obesity on the island of Ireland (ASOI) has successfully changed the word for obesity in the Irish language. ‘Otracht’ was previously the Irish term for obesity. The English translation of ‘otracht’ is critical, negative and derogatory.
“Language is important. The words we choose matter” says Dr Jean O’Connell, Chair of ASOI. “People living with certain stigmatised diseases say that coping with the stigma of the disease is harder than coping with the disease itself. We need to change the way that we talk about overweight and obesity, in every language”.
Niamh Arthurs (Public Health and Clinical Nutritionist, ASOI Education role) addressed this concern with Foras Na Gaeilge. They advised Ms Arthurs to bring the case to the translation section of the Oireachtas in Leinster House. Following discussion, they informed the ASOI that the word ‘murtall’ will be used instead of ‘otracht’ in legislation in Ireland and they will also advise European institutions to use the term ‘murtall’ in future. Foras Na Gaeilge also stated that they would recommend general use of the term ‘murtall’.
“In line with current medical and social understanding of noncommunicable diseases like obesity, the ASOI acknowledges the crucial role of a person-centred approach to all aspects of treatment and prevention. Patient representation and advocacy is an important part of this approach” states Mr Schubert. He feels directly affected by the negative connotation in the now retired definition of obesity in Irish and brought his concerns to the attention of ASOI, triggering the process that has now resulted in an updated, more humane and respectful vocabulary of our national language.
More information on weight bias and stigma can be found here and here.
Health Survey Northern Ireland 2016/17
The Department of Health in Northern Ireland published the results of the Health Survey 2016/17.
There is an upward trend in obesity levels in adults. The percentage of overweight children has fallen by 2% from 2010/11 but the percentage of those children classified as obese has remained constant.
55% of participants met the recommendations for physical activity.
Belfast summit on Global Food Integrity - Call for abstracts
An international summit on Global Food Integrity will take place in Belfast on 28 - 31 May 2018. A key theme is "Delivering the nutritional needs for the 21st century global population" which includes:
- Nutritional challenges and implications for health
- Lifestyle nutrition and long term health
- Behavioural change and improving diet quality
- Biomarkers improving dietary assessment and relationships between diet and health.
Abstract submissions on these areas and other related topics are welcome. E-mail submissions to email@example.com
Further information on the summit visit www.asset2018.eu